Huevos Rancheros

Huevos rancheros (fried eggs with a chili sauce on corn tortillas) is a common mid-morning food on rural Mexican farms. It’s a Tex-Mex breakfast you see everywhere in Texas (amazingly, adding gobs of sour cream, cheese, and lettuce is actually not really an indigenous Mexican dish)

The term Tex-Mex cuisine came up in the 1970s, and what “Mexican food” people refer to is often really Tex-Mex.

Tex Mex is characterized by heavy use of shredded cheese, meat (particularly beef and pork), refried beans (and let’s not forget the very generous portions). Also, the sheer amount of carbs (think nachos, tacos, and tortilla wraps) is more Tex Mex than Mexican. Tex-Mex has imported flavors from other spicy cuisines, such as the use of cumin (an Indian spice that is not really used in traditional Mexican recipes).

Texas-style chili con carne, chimichangas and fajitas are all Tex-Mex inventions. (sources from here and here)

I picked this dish because I’m attempting the $4.50 a day diet (yes, $4.50 a day total, not per meal), which is how much you get in food stamps from the government. It’s definitely hearty and filling (maybe too filling….I’m not used to eating so much carbs in one meal, hence food coma. I’m not ever gonna have so much rice, tortillas and beans in one meal again)

Corn tortillas have corn (surprise surprise), and are more versatile than flour tortillas since they can be eaten as is, or fried to make corn chips, taquitos, or hard shell tacos.  Even better they have less fat, sodium, and calories than flour. Trying to be nutritious AND economical.

Pico de Gallo: 
1/2 medium onion, chopped (half cup)
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes (or fresh)
1/2 avocado
2 jalapenos
fresh cilantro, chopped
chili powder, paprika, ground cumin, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste

Olive oil
3 eggs
1/2 cup pinto beans, cooked or from can
3 corn tortillas
shredded cheese (colby jack, chedder, or mozerella)
fresh cilantro, to garnish

Combine all the ingredients for the pico de gallo. Adjust spices to taste.

Prepare the tortillas by heating them in a large non-stick skillet with olive oil on medium high.  Heat minute or two on each side until softened with pockets of air bubbles (alternatively, microwave them).

For the fried eggs, heat olive oil on the pan on high heat. Crack eggs into the skillet and cook for 5 minutes, depending on how cooked you want them.

To serve, top tortilla with beans, fried egg. Top with pico de gallo and garnish with cilantro.

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